Ragged rockstar Frank Black and cooler-than-thou actor Johnny Depp may have more in common than you think.
Sure, the two rebels might make the girls scream for entirely different reasons, and Black doesn't exactly measure-up in the, uh... well, "hair" department. But still, damned if they aren't both ego-maniacs, damned if they aren't both cult figures that seem to make their target audience swoon no matter what (and considering that whole Charlie and the Chocolate Factory thing, that's saying a lot), and damned if they aren't both more or less unintelligible when delivering their most famous roles.
Yup. It's hard to believe, but the only real difference between these two sons of bitches (besides the hair and level of beauty) is that old boy Johnny Depp only acts like a crazy-ass pirate when the cameras are rolling, but Frank Black just dials up the lunacy whenever the hell he feels like it.
Case in point, the ever duplicitous Black will be sailing down the Pacific coast after re-donning his much more dubious and decidedly more mercenary-like stage name "Black Francis" (an alias which the mad singer hasn't employed since his days captaining Pixies' ship in ye olde 1990s) to promote NOT a Pixies Record, but none other than his newly fashioned solo record (also recorded under the "Black Francis" moniker), which was recently released via the Cooking Vinyl label and contains just about as many gruff growls and crack-mouthed snarls as even the most consumptive of 17th-century pirates would utter.
And the record's name? Bluefinger.
See? Sounds like pirate talk to me.
But just to make things a little weirder (i.e., a little more like At World's End), let me remind all you land-lovers that Captain Black Francis' new album was reportedly influenced by the deceased Dutch painter/musician Herman Brood, who Black says was the "Dutch personification of 'sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.'" So, I guess this is some sort of racial thing? Hmmm...
Either way, the dates below only pillage the West Coast, but Black's ship is at the mercy of the trade winds, so keep your spyglasses peeled for additional dates as they develop.
MediaDefender, one of the more pernicious organizations dedicated to anti-piracy measures against P2P and torrent sites, is in a little bit of a mess right now. Reason being that over 700MB of company e-mail has been hacked by a group who dashingly refer to themselves as ‘MediaDefender-Defenders.’ These e-mails were released onto BitTorrent -- of course -- over the weekend and verily, they are a sight to behold.
Owned by ARTISTdirect, MediaDefender basically operates by setting up accounts on torrent sites spreading fake files across file-sharing networks. The company is then able to collate IP addresses of users downloading the files and send copyright infringement notices to ISPs and/or launch denial of service attacks against the distributors. For example, the fragrantly named a55talk on torrentreactor.to is the 47th most prolific uploader on the site, yet the e-mails reveal that this particular scat-lover was a creation of MediaDefender. Best not download your copy of Curtis from there, eh kids? Maybe you should get it from any of the torrent sites that MediaDefender don’t monitor -- an easier job, now that I can give you a list of the sites that it trains its piggy little eyes upon (top to bottom in order of ‘strength of presence’):
You’d think, given the humanitarian bent of MediaDefender’s work, that it would be doing it all purely for the love of the job. Not so, according to another of the indiscreet e-mails. It states that MediaDefender charges a sweet $4,000 a month for ‘protecting’ one album or $2,000 a month to throw those comforting, motherly arms around a single track. Certainly not chump change. So, who is MediaDefender charging? According to its website: "MediaDefender has been contracted by every major record label and every major movie studio, video game publishers, software publishers, and anime publishers."
Perhaps the most intriguing electronic missives concern the MiiVi.com site that appeared a couple of months back. Basically, this site was a super-fast download portal that also encouraged users to download an app that would enable increased download speeds. Instead, the app was a trojan horse that searched the user’s computer for illegally downloaded material, and all the files on the site were corrupted -- which isn’t surprising considering the site was owned and operated by MediaDefender. And how was this discovered? A simple check of WHOIS revealed that MediaDefender had been too busy wiping its cocaine-gorged nose with $100 bills to bother covering up the fact that the MiiVi domain registration was in its name. As MediaDefender’s glorious leader, Randy Saaf, said in an e-mail when he learned of the busting, “This is really fucked. Let’s pull miivi offline.” Naturally, at the time, Saaf was eager to deny that MiiVi was any sort of honey-pot, that it was merely an internal experiment that was mistakenly released onto the wider internet. Patent bullshit, of course, and the e-mails indeed appear to confirm that he was lying, as they include comments concerning the current take-up rate of the MiiVi trojan horse by members and a discussion of the possibility of relaunching the site under the name of viide.com. The dudes still couldn’t work out how to mask the domain ownership, though...
There’s a ton more information contained in the e-mails, and I’d recommend you visit your friendly neighborhood torrent site for some quick download action should you want to read more. Can’t read? Then why not listen to some leaked MediaDefender phone calls? Considering that the e-mails also contained the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all the main officials of the company, those at MediaDefender can probably expect one or two billion unexpected pizza deliveries in the near future.
This report is on Matt Pond PA. First, Matt Pond PA had a wonderful family of six. Second, I have some of the important dates in Matt Pond PA's life. Third, Matt Pond PA was famous because he fought in the Civil War and later became president. Lastly, I have some facts about Matt Pond PA's new album and fall tour. Now I'm going to tell you more details.
First, Matt Pond PA had a wonderful family of six. He had four children: three boys and one girl. Their names were Ellen, Jesse, Frederick, and Ulysses. His wife was Julia Boggs Dent. This was Matt Pond PA's family.
Second, these are some of the important dates in Matt Pond PA's life. On April 27, 1822, he was born in Point Pleasant, Ohio. In 1843, he graduated from West Point University. On August 22, 1848, he married
Julia Dent. In 1854, he resigned from the army. In 1861, he was appointed Colonel of the Illinois Volunteers. In 1863, he led Union troops to victory. In 1864, he was named Supreme Commander of all
Union forces. On April 9, 1865, he accepted the surrender of Confederate forces under General Robert E. Lee. In 1868, he was elected president of the United States. In 1872, he was re-elected president. In 1880, he was defeated in presidential nomination. On July 23, 1885, he died in Mount Gregor, New York. These are some important dates in Matt Pond PA's life.
Third, Matt Pond PA was famous because he fought in the Civil War and later became President of the United States. In trenches around Richmond and Petersburg was where General Robert E. Lee retreated and then surrendered to Grant at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865. Matt Pond PA proved through the wars that he fought in that he was a fearless soldier, a great general, and a humble man. He was the
18th president. He was after Johnson, and before Hayes.
Lastly, I have some facts about Matt Pond PA's new album and fall tour. On September 25, 2007, Matt Pond PA's new album will be released and it will be entitled Last Light. This album will be produced by Matt Pond PA and will benefit from the help of Neko Case and other well-known musicians. On September 27, 2007, Matt Pond PA will begin a national headlining tour in Boston, Massachusetts and will continue
his campaign until he reaches Brooklyn, New York on November 5, 2007. This is the latest news on Matt Pond PA.
In conclusion, this is my report on Matt Pond PA. He was a great man.
Last Light tracklisting:
While surfing THE FACEBOOK, you find this really, really ripped dude. Check that profile, GURL!
Interested in: Hip young people wanting to sell their own tickets
Relationship Status: Single, if you are
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
Website: Facebook applications page
Interests: Movies, Gettin’ Freaky, Weightlifting, Allowing you (oh sticky-sweaty-sexy TMTer with Facebook) to sell blocks of (up to 5,000) tickets for smaller venues -- like local and college shows by adding the above Facebook application... fly honeys, weightlifting
We live in cutting edge times. With our flying cars, space vacations, and “downloadable” music, we need to adapt to a completely different set of societal rules and regs than even our parents did. More importantly for this asinine news story, we need to adhere to new practices concerning anniversary gift ideas for companies who have hit certain key numbers of purchased digital downloads.
It used to be so easy. For example, if eMusic, “the world’s leading digital retailer of independent music, second only to iTunes in number of downloads sold” (thank you Billboard), were to turn 15 years old, we would get them something made of crystal if we were traditionalists or a watch if we were modern dandies. Old school gifters don't have designated gift suggestions for “the big 44,” but if eMusic were to reach that magical milestone, it would surely receive some groceries from neoteric celebrants. Groceries? Hmm. Well, nothing says "Happy 44th" like half-eaten Lunchables and some cream soda, that’s for damned sure!
Everyone knows it is impolite, bordering on a hangable offense, to ask a multi-conglomerate corporation how old they are... but we do know that eMusic has surpassed 150 million downloads sold, which means they are due for a present!
The chart below will tell you exactly what gift is apropos for such momentous downloading occasions:
1 hundredth download: troll doll
45 thousandth download: placemat from greasy spoon (preferably with children's puzzle-maze one-third completed and droplets of chocolate milkshake on corner)
112 thousandth download: horse-head bookends
599 thousandth download: the anniversary of fuzzy felt
900 thousandth download: 15 minutes + padded cell + Karen Ann (sorry, I have no idea how my “3 wishes for a genie” list ended up here)
1 millionth download: boobies or weewee immortalized by Cynthia Plaster Caster (a great showpiece for the mantle!)
16 millionth download: bandanas and/or medium-density fibreboard
17 millionth download: a formal dinner followed by a best-out-of-101 Euchre game with Chris Tucker, Gilbert Gottfried, and Rosie O’Donnell (listen, I don’t make the rules, I just report them…)
37 millionth download: anything mylar
71 millionth download: the chance to narrate an episode of A&E's City Confidential
111 millionth download: dust
150 millionth download: solid gold bathtub
The fun ends there. With each successive 150 millionth download sold that a company celebrates, you get another tub. Congratulations eMusic! You’re soakin’ in it!
October 30, Columbia/Legacy -- excuse me, Sony BMG -- will release The Other Side of the Mirror -- Bob Dylan Live at the Newport Folk Festival 1963-1965, a retrospective DVD that captures Bob Dylan in his finest and most virile moments -- being political, chillin’ (and possibly even frenching) with Joan Baez, plus probably going electric. Ever since his death, Dylan’s influence and mythic power -- as well as his library of releases -- has only grown, much like a delicious fungus on the bleu cheese of rock ‘n’ roll history. Dylan peaks like Highway 61 Revisited and Blonde on Blonde just wouldn’t be the same if followed by decades of uninspired, tautological drivel. We can only imagine an alternate future where Dylan, with Lennon, Hendrix, and Coltrane, hit the road in some sort of washed-up Traveling Wilder-band, hawking sexy underwear, dropping discs in soulless corporate coffee chains, and releasing sometimes critically acclaimed but ultimately irrelevant albums every few years.
In addition to the DVD, Sony BMG is further milking its posthumous coffers with Dylan, a "best of" to be sold in all sorts of wacky packaging -- an 18-song cheapo edition, a 3-disc perfect-for-the-holidays set, and a "deluxe LIMITED EDITION," which goes so far as to even include much sought after collectable postcards. Next time you’re on vacation, nothing says "I’d send these to you if they didn’t belong to a LIMITED EDITION set" like $40 unusable postcards.
And then there’s I’m Not There: a requiem of sorts, a last scrape of that ol’ Dylan goldmine, a final "Thanks for all the memories, Bob. See you in hell."
Wzt Hearts, the new sensation of the century, have released their sophomore album Threads Rope Spell Making Your Bones (TMT Review) today on Carpark Records. Apparently, the album is a conceptual "reimagining" of the 1981 Black Flag classic Damaged, surely a daring move for any group. But Wzt Hearts are quick to point out that it's not a "cover album," but instead a benefit compilation with the subtitle Instant Karma: Save Darfur. The interesting thing about this benefit album, however, is that it plays entirely in reverse. Yep, the whole album plays backwards! But Wzt Hearts went even one step further by separating the musical parts of the songs and releasing them on four separate discs, requiring listeners to essentially play all four CDs simultaneously in order to hear the "full" album.
Threads Rope Spell Making Your Bones -- Instant Karma: Save Darfur is released worldwide today, with three special-edition U.S. versions exclusive to iTunes, Best Buy, and Target -- each version contains different bonus tracks. Jimmy Chamberlin guest drums on two tracks. Chris Walla produced the album. Colin Meloy co-wrote a song. Dan Deacon endorses the album, etc., etc.
Bad Brains Re-Enter the Spotlight, Tour, Bradley “Brad” Brains Jr. Finally Beginning to Understand the Prank Phone Calls that Drove His Father to Alcoholism and Suicide
Bad Brains were arguably the first and best hardcore band of all time. They fused punk and reggae like none other, inspiring a generation to play faster than their juvenile, coffee-addled brains could have ever imagined. Then they went downhill, and for a long time absolutely nothing happened.
Bad Brains are touring. The members are bona fide legends at this point and, on the heels of their acclaimed new album, Build A Nation, seem poised to claim their place in the pantheon.
I don’t care. I love Bad Brains, and I don’t care. I am only wondering one thing: Does this mean they will collaborate with Lil Jon? I know they’re friends. Lil Jon is a fan of Bad Brains. Everyone likes Lil Jon, so Bad Brains are fans of Lil John. I want to hear Dr. Know and co. play “Banned in D.C.” and “Sailin’ On” as much as the next guy, but I would give my right arm and firstborn son to hear H.R. and Lil Jon have a five-minute conversation with one another, let alone collaborate on what I have no qualms calling the most important thing of the 21st century.
I ask: What amount of money will it take to make this happen? What drugs will it take to make this happen? I will give myself up to the cause. I will get the lowest anyone has ever gotten. I will love Jah. I will burn myself at the stake so long as the last thing I hear before I shuffle off this mortal coil is Lil Jon, drunk out of his mind, screaming his lungs out with Bad Brains.
If you would like to join my church and testify, you may do so at one of these upcoming crunk-free (comparatively) Bad Brains performances:
Pygmalion Music Festival to Host 71 Bands, 70 to Suck and Attract Stupid Frat Boys, My Friends’ Band to Melt Face
Attention Urbana Hipsters: The floor-staring, ironic-dancing, “I liked them better when they were called Pavement” event of the season is fast approaching. Starting Wednesday, September 19, the Pygmalion Music Festival will blow the roof off local bars throughout the Champaign-Urbana area, home to the University of Illinois. Brush up on your Pitchfork review scores because you wouldn’t want to hesitate when your significantly less hip friends ask “have you heard of these guys?”
The festival, in its third year, will be headlined by Andrew Bird and Okkervil River while major artists, including David Bazan, The Redwalls, ?uestlove, Headlights, Casiotone For The Painfully Alone, and Owen, will be playing over the festival’s four-day span.
Unfortunately, none of these artists matter and, in fact, are only listened to by bigots who hate universal suffrage, the abstract concept of liberty, and those adorable pictures of cats with the grammatically incorrect captions.
- Andrew Bird? Nice whistle, idiot.
- Okkervil River? Named after a story named after a river in a place that was once called LENINGRAD. Nice political statement Will.
- David Bazan? Every song on his new EP have unironic alternate titles; even Fall Out Boy has advanced past this.
- The Redwalls? They’re still a band? (No, seriously, is this blowing anyone else’s mind that these dudes are still making music? I thought after bands were featured on MTV 2’s The Leak they simply ceased to exist…)
- Headlights? Sucked when they were called Stars.
- Casiotone For The Painfully Alone? Dude HATES cupcakes.
Owen? The reason American Football broke up was because Mike Kinsella wanted to pursue a solo career, hoping that one day he could play an indie-rock festival in Champaign-Urbana. Pygmalion broke up American Football.
It gets worse. If you do decide to throw caution to wind and see one of these shows (which effectively indicates that you are against the RIAA, but only because you think its anti-piracy measures are not strong enough), you will likely be surrounded by jeep brahs who will promptly attempt to steal your boyfriend/girlfriend and throw a beer can at you (if you’re a dude) or scream things like “ungh gurl, give me your digits” or “so much honey in here I thought I was in a beehive” so loudly you'll be unable to even hear the music (if you’re a female).
Now, I know what you're thinking: “the baseless claims you’ve indiscriminately hurled have changed my mind, but I’ve already purchased the incredibly reasonable $45 festival pass, which grants me access to all shows at all eight associated venues... where can I sell it?” Don’t. While 70 of the bands may not support the Kyoto Protocol or transparency in government, one band still has your social, economic, and rock ‘n’ roll needs covered. Oceans. This is “The Band That Plays What Leonard Cohen Meant To say.”
But don’t take my word on the fact that OCEANS is the pinnacle of art. Consult the following breakdown and make your own decisions about what you think of Oceans' unique brand of post-rock smeared in a Midwest punk rock ethos.
Andrew Bird V. Oceans
- Andrew Bird has a degree in violin performance from Northwestern University with a degree. A degree tailor-made for amusing the aristocracy.
- Oceans is comprised of altruists seeking to make the human experience better for all, with one member in medical school and the others completing degrees in urban planning, education, and political science.
- Andrew Bird worked with the Squirrel Nut Zippers.
- Oceans work alone. Like James Bond.
Okkervil River V. Oceans
- Okkervil River’s Pygmalion time slot is at 12:20 on a Wednesday night.
- Oceans is already in bed preparing to work their hardest the next day.
- Will Sheff produces critical writings on film, literature, and music for a host of respected publications.
- Oceans ain’t no nine-to-five sellouts.
David Bazan V. Oceans
- The Wikipedia entry on Pedro The Lion refers to their genre as “Slowcore.”
- The Wikipedia article on Oceans talks about the likelihood of water on the Galilean moon Europa and has an infrared map of large underwater features.
The Redwalls V. Oceans
- No counterpoint necessary.
Headlights V. Oceans
- Headlights' songs include quaint narratives about small town life and love.
- In Oceans, "Epic masterpieces unfold like boyhood adventures as lies are told, battles are fought, and friendships are saved, evoking nostalgia with every strum. With the blink of an eye, Oceans kicks in a math rock swagger that sneers and spits as much as it sanctifies. True to their midwestern punk rock ethos, they play every note with the sincerity and honesty that music was meant to be played, making ever performance one to be remembered."
Owen V. Oceans
- Mike Kinsella, Owen, sits on stage statically and plays complex acoustic pieces.
- Oceans will punch you/one another in the face for not feeling it.
Casiotone For The Painfully Alone V. Oceans
- Owen Ashworth wants to revoke the third amendment in the Bill of Rights.
- Oceans don’t want no troops all up in their business.
You can get the (unnecessary) schedule here but really all that matters is that Oceans will be playing at 8 P.M. on Friday, September 21 at the Canopy Club. Festival-long passes are still available, and tickets for all shows will be for sale at the door.
Full disclosure/plagiarism defense: I would like to thank the members of Oceans for supplying all of the material in quotes.
The supple, smooth bodies, more than half-naked and gracing the pages of the New York City-based hipster bible and free magazine Vice, are sinful in their appeal. Countless beauties, often underage, are semi-clad in the latest fashions while their tattered bangs crowd their inviting stares. So when Vice's music division, Vice Records, approached its band The Stills about joining this class of boho model in a topless photo shoot, one would imagine the Canadian band found themselves flattered.
However, in a shocking turn of events, The Stills' conservative side and former body image issues shone through resulting in an uncomfortable situation for all. At a loss about their label's audacity, the band decided to part ways with Vice and seek out a new, more respectful arrangement. Enter Arts & Crafts.
The Canadian powerhouse label, home to Broken Social Scene and nearly all of their spawn, have been on quite a diversifying tear lately signing Wales startups Los Campesinos! and Ontario rockers The Constantines. The wide net cast by the label, allegedly initiated when it was rumored that Kelly Clarkson and Clive Davis had beef, did not end in a deal with the pop princess but instead Arts & Crafts has bulked up with the addition of the three still-budding rock acts. The Stills, the latest to join the team in lieu of their indecent exposure are currently cooped up in their native Montreal hoping to complete their third LP and follow up to 2006's Without Feathers. Luckily for the fans, you won't have to wait until the record's planned release in Spring of 2008 to catch the group in action, as they plan to perform scattered shows in the area while also traveling to Florida to open for Spoon (and probably visit Disney World).
Catch 'em clothed: